If you’re reading this, then that means that you’re thinking about diving into into the adventure of eloping! And you’re not alone – adventure elopements and weddings have gained popularity in the past few years – and for good reason! With its incredible opportunity for fun, intimacy, and an exciting adventure, definitely check out these five places to elope in Colorado so you can plan an epic way to celebrate together.
With its 42 state parks, four national parks, rugged mountains, sweeping plains, and breathtaking landscapes – Colorado can provide the perfect backdrop for an intimate and unforgettable celebration that is unique and authentic to just the two of you.
If you’re seeking a magical escape to tie the knot with your partner, Colorado offers an abundance of picturesque locations – from the beautiful mountains to the charming towns and hidden gems tucked away in its vast wilderness, the options are endless. In this blog, I’ll go through the reasons couples are drawn to eloping in this scenic state, the legal requirements for getting married in Colorado, and a curated list of the most captivating elopement destinations that will make your special day truly extraordinary! Discover the allure of eloping in Colorado and how you can create cherished memories in this magnificent setting that will last a lifetime.
Why Plan a Colorado Elopement?
Planning an elopement in Colorado is an incredible choice for couples seeking a one-of-a-kind adventure and an unforgettable wedding experience. With its stunning landscapes and diverse terrain, these places to elope in Colorado offer a wide variety of breathtaking locations that cater to every couple’s dream celebration.
Incredible Natural Beauty
From the majestic peaks of the Rocky Mountains to the serene alpine lakes and picturesque meadows, the natural beauty of Colorado provides the perfect backdrop for intimate and romantic ceremonies. Whether you envision exchanging vows with snow-capped mountains in the distance or saying “I do” in a secluded forest glade, Colorado’s diverse scenery ensures a magical and personalized elopement experience.
Dream Elopement for Outdoor Lovers
The state’s commitment to eco-friendly practices and its reputation as an epic adventure destination for outdoor enthusiasts make it an ideal choice for couples who cherish nature and cherish unique, meaningful moments. In Colorado, love truly finds its place amidst nature’s grandeur! During your elopement weekend you can go hiking, kayaking, skiing (depending on the season), and more! Making Colorado a compelling and unforgettable setting for outdoor-loving couples embarking on their epic journey of love and commitment together.
When to Elope in Colorado
When planning your elopement in Colorado, you really want to consider the type of elopement you want – do you want it to be warm, breezy, or snowy? Do you picture yourself going on a hike the morning of your elopement or skiing? And do you want your elopement to be just you and your partner, or do you not mind the crowds? Colorado has incredibly diverse seasons (both for weather and tourists!) and you want to keep both in mind when planning your dream elopement.
Best Time of Year for a Colorado Elopement
The best time of year to elope in Colorado largely depends on your wedding experience preference. Each season offers its own unique charm, making Colorado a year-round elopement destination.
Winter Elopement in Colorado
For those seeking a winter wonderland elopement, the months of December through February are ideal, with snow-covered landscapes and the opportunity to enjoy skiing or snowboarding amidst the stunning Rocky Mountains. I suggest eloping in January or February to avoid the December holiday crowds. If you’re planning on eloping at a higher elevation during the winter months, hiking is probably not the best idea for inexperienced wanderers. Try to stick to a small venue or airbnb for your winter adventure in Colorado.
Spring Elopement in Colorado
March to May brings blooming wildflowers and milder temperatures, perfect for those who wish to celebrate their love amidst the awakening nature. An excellent time for an elopement! Again, be weary of the higher altitudes that can make for a more difficult adventure in the springtime where there is still plenty of snow!
Summer Elopement in Colorado
June to August offers warm and sunny days, allowing couples to explore the outdoors and enjoy the abundance of scenic locations. I suggest eloping in June to avoid the late summer heat and tourists on their late summer vacations. But don’t worry – at those higher elevations, you’ll definitely enjoy a cooler temperature and breeze even during the summer months.
Fall Elopement in Colorado
September to November treats couples to a vibrant display of autumn foliage, creating a picturesque setting for their elopement. I suggest eloping in October for milder temperatures and less crowds.
Whether it’s the snowy enchantment of winter, the blossoming beauty of spring, the sunny adventures of summer, or the colorful splendor of fall, each season in Colorado promises a magical and unforgettable elopement experience!
Best Time of Day and Week
To ensure a more secluded elopement experience, I advise opting for a weekday elopement between Tuesday and Thursday, avoiding the increase of tourists and hikers in popular picturesque spots during long weekends. Alternatively, consider the magic of a sunrise or sunset elopement. By choosing this time of day, you have the opportunity to enjoy the stunning surroundings without the crowds and you also get to witness the extraordinary beauty of Colorado at its best.
Read on for the top 5 best places to elope in Colorado!
5 Adventurous Locations for a Colorado Elopement
1. Central Northern Colorado
Central Northern Colorado boasts a captivating array of natural wonders and charming destinations, making it a paradise for nature lovers looking for a dream elopement area. You could elope in the enchanting town of Estes Park, the gateway to Rocky Mountain National Park. Here, immerse yourself in the splendor of towering peaks, cascading waterfalls, and abundant wildlife. The park’s scenic drives and well-maintained trails lead to breathtaking viewpoints, making it a dream destination for elopement ceremonies surrounded by nature.
Move a little south and you could also elope in Boulder, a vibrant city nestled against the stunning Flatirons, offering a delightful blend of urban sophistication and breathtaking mountain views. From here, you could drive a bit West to have your elopement moment at Brainard Lake, a serene alpine paradise, where you can explore picturesque trails and marvel at crystalline lakes. Move further South an hour and you could elope in beautiful Golden Gate Canyon State Park. With its rugged terrain and diverse ecosystems, the park provides endless opportunities for hiking, camping, and wildlife spotting. All of central northern Colorado presents an unforgettable journey through a world of natural beauty and idyllic towns, inviting couples to create cherished memories amidst the majesty of the Rocky Mountains.
Where to Plan Your Central North Colorado Elopement:Boulder
Estes Park/Rocky Mountain National Park – see a recent elopement moment here!
Golden Gate Canyon State Park
Estes Park / Rocky Mountain National Park Elopement Itinerary
Day 1 – Begin your enchanting elopement in Estes Park by arriving in this picturesque mountain town. Check into a cozy cabin or a charming bed and breakfast, immersing yourselves in the serenity of nature. Take a leisurely stroll along the riverwalk, breathing in the fresh mountain air and admiring the scenic beauty. Enjoy a romantic dinner at a local restaurant, savoring the flavors of Colorado’s delightful cuisine.
Day 2 – Start your special day with a heartfelt breakfast in your accommodation, energizing yourselves for the day’s adventures. As the sun rises, venture into the majestic Rocky Mountain National Park for your intimate ceremony amidst nature’s splendor. Exchange your vows in a serene location surrounded by towering peaks and lush forests, capturing the essence of your love in the embrace of the great outdoors. Enlist a professional photographer to immortalize these cherished moments.
After the ceremony, embark on some of the exciting outdoor adventures that Rocky Mountain National Park offers. Hike along the scenic trails to alpine lakes, waterfalls, and breathtaking viewpoints. Spot wildlife and revel in the tranquility of the wilderness. If you’re feeling adventurous, try rock climbing or horseback riding. The park’s vastness provides endless opportunities for exploration and connection with nature.
Day 3 – On your final day, devote some time to a photography shoot at the most picturesque locations in Estes Park and Rocky Mountain National Park. Capture your love amidst the scenic beauty, with the Rocky Mountains as a stunning backdrop. From the wildflower meadows to the dramatic peaks, let the natural landscapes enhance the intimacy of your love story.
In the afternoon, find a serene spot to relax and reflect on your elopement experience. Enjoy a couples’ spa treatment or find a peaceful spot by a mountain stream for a leisurely picnic. Embrace the tranquility and majesty of the Rocky Mountains and cherish the moments of peace and serenity as you begin your new journey together.
2. Central Eastern Colorado
Eloping in Central East Colorado is a captivating experience that immerses couples in the breathtaking beauty of the region. The Colorado Springs area, with its picturesque landscapes and vibrant city life, serves as a perfect starting point. From here, venture to the iconic Garden of the Gods, a perfect elopement spot, where towering red rock formations create a stunning backdrop for an intimate ceremony with an incredible view. The amazing beauty of this natural wonder could add a touch of magic to your special day. You could also have your elopement ceremony at Red Rocks Canyon Open Space. With its dramatic cliffs and peaceful trails it offers another idyllic setting for capturing cherished moments with your loved one. This whole area has awe-inspiring vistas and serene landscapes, making it a dream destination for couples seeking a truly unforgettable elopement experience amidst the wonders of nature.
Where to Plan Your Central East Colorado Elopement:Colorado Springs
Garden of the Gods
Red Rocks Canyon
Colorado Springs Elopement Itinerary
Day 1 – Check into a charming inn or a boutique hotel, and take a moment to immerse yourselves in the serene atmosphere of the area. Stroll through the historic downtown, explore the unique shops and art galleries, and savor a delightful dinner at a local restaurant.
Day 2 – Begin your ceremony day with a “first look”. Capture the special moment with your photographer as you see each other for the first time on your wedding day. Then head to the iconic Garden of the Gods, where nature’s masterpiece will serve as the backdrop for your intimate ceremony. Exchange your vows amidst the towering red rock formations, surrounded by the majesty of the Rocky Mountains. With your photographer, capture the raw emotions and cherished moments of your love.
After the ceremony, take pictures at some of the other picturesque locations in and around Colorado Springs. Visit Red Rocks Canyon Open Space, where dramatic cliffs and peaceful trails create an ethereal atmosphere for capturing the essence of your love story. From candid shots to intimate moments, let the breathtaking scenery enhance the beauty of your elopement memories.
Day 3 – On your final day, enjoy the wonders of Colorado Springs by embarking on one of many fun outdoor adventure options. Hike the trails of Cheyenne Mountain State Park or explore the scenic wonders of North Cheyenne Cañon Park. From horseback riding to rock climbing, the area offers an array of activities that cater to your sense of adventure and love for nature. In the evening, enjoy a sunset dinner and exchange love letters, sharing your favorite memories of your elopement weekend.
3. Central Southern Colorado
Eloping in Central South Colorado offers a truly unique and mesmerizing experience, particularly at the captivating Great Sand Dunes National Park. Nestled amidst the rugged Sangre de Cristo Mountains, this natural wonder is home to the tallest sand dunes in North America, creating a surreal landscape that is both breathtaking and enchanting. For couples seeking an intimate and unforgettable elopement, the vastness of the sand dunes provides a secluded and otherworldly setting for a dream ceremony. As the sun sets over the dunes, painting the sky with hues of gold and pink, exchanging vows amidst this surreal beauty will be a moment etched in the hearts of the couple forever. Great Sand Dunes National Park offers a truly extraordinary backdrop for love and commitment, making it an ideal destination for those seeking a one-of-a-kind elopement experience amidst the wonders of nature.
Where to Plan Your Central South Colorado Elopement:Great Sand Dunes National Park
Great Sand Dunes National Park Elopement Itinerary
Day 1 – Upon arrival, check into your cozy accommodation near the park. As the afternoon sun casts a warm glow on the dunes, embark on a quick photoshoot amidst the stunning natural backdrop. Capture those cherished moments of your love, dressed in your finest attire, surrounded by the surreal beauty of the sand dunes.
Day 2 – As the sun rises, venture into the heart of Great Sand Dunes National Park for your intimate ceremony. With the majestic dunes as your witness, exchange heartfelt vows that echo through the vastness of the landscape. The unique serenity and grandeur of the park create an enchanting atmosphere for a truly unforgettable union. Have a photographer capture every special moment, as the beauty of nature and your love intertwine.
After the ceremony, embrace the adventurous spirit of the park and embark on fun outdoor explorations. Ascend the dunes to catch panoramic views of the surroundings, hand in hand with your partner. Try sandboarding or sand sledding down the slopes, creating playful memories together. As the day unfolds, take a leisurely hike along the Medano Creek or explore the nearby foothills, immersing yourselves in the stunning natural wonders that surround you.
Day 3 – On your final day, take a moment to relax and reflect on your elopement experience. Enjoy a peaceful picnic amidst the dunes or find a serene spot to bask in the tranquility of the landscape. Write love letters to each other, expressing your profound emotions and gratitude for this extraordinary journey. As you bid farewell to Great Sand Dunes National Park, depart with cherished memories of your intimate celebration amidst nature’s wonder, knowing that your love will forever be intertwined with the surreal beauty of this exceptional place.
4. Southern Colorado
Eloping in Southern Colorado promises a magical and romantic experience, especially amidst the breathtaking splendor of the San Juan National Forest. This captivating region boasts awe-inspiring vistas, picturesque alpine meadows, and rugged peaks that create a mesmerizing backdrop for an intimate elopement. Whether you envision exchanging vows at sunrise against a palette of vibrant colors or under a canopy of stars, the San Juan Mountains offer an enchanting setting for a heartfelt ceremony. As you declare your love amidst nature’s grandeur, the tranquil ambiance of the mountains will infuse your special day with a sense of serenity and profound connection. Embrace the spirit of adventure with scenic hikes and nature walks, immersing yourselves in the wild beauty that surrounds you. Eloping in the San Juan Mountains of Southern Colorado promises an unforgettable celebration of love amidst nature’s most breathtaking creations.
Where to Plan Your Southern Colorado Elopement:San Juan National Forest
San Juan Mountains Elopement Itinerary
Day 1 – Upon arrival in the morning, check into your cozy mountain retreat and prepare for epic adventures! Embark on scenic hikes through alpine meadows, with wildflowers painting the landscape in vibrant colors. For more adventurous couples, consider a thrilling mountain biking or horseback riding excursion along the trails. As the day unfolds, find tranquility in a peaceful picnic by a mountain stream or a leisurely paddle on a serene alpine lake. The San Juan Mountains offer endless opportunities to immerse yourselves in the stunning natural wonders that surround you.
Day 2 – Sleep in and then have a “getting ready” photoshoot with your photographer. Then as the sun begins to set in the evening, venture into the heart of the San Juan Mountains for your intimate ceremony. Surrounded by the majestic peaks and pristine wilderness, exchange heartfelt vows that echo through the vastness of the landscape. The serene ambiance of the mountains creates an enchanting atmosphere for a truly unforgettable union. Have a professional photographer capture every emotional moment, as the beauty of nature and your love intertwine. Afterwards, head back into town for a romantic dinner under the vast stars. Share your favorite memories of the day together.
Day 3 – On your final day, take a moment to relax and reflect on your elopement experience amidst the tranquility of the mountains. Enjoy a peaceful breakfast on your mountain retreat’s terrace or find a secluded spot to bask in the serenity of nature. As you bid farewell to the San Juan Mountains, leave with incredible memories of your intimate celebration amidst nature’s magic, knowing that your love will forever be intertwined with the breathtaking beauty of this remarkable mountain range.
5. Central Western Colorado
Eloping in Central West Colorado offers an enchanting journey through some of the state’s most picturesque destinations. Aspen’s majestic mountain vistas provide a breathtaking backdrop for romantic elopements, while Vail’s alpine charm and luxurious accommodations offer a touch of sophistication to your special day. Idaho Springs exudes a rustic allure, with its historic charm and natural hot springs inviting couples to unwind and celebrate love. Breckenridge‘s quaint mountain town ambiance sets the stage for intimate ceremonies amidst snow-capped peaks and vibrant fall foliage. And lastly, Summit County’s picturesque landscapes and sparkling lakes create a serene and romantic setting for couples seeking an unforgettable elopement experience. Each destination in West and Central West Colorado offers its own unique charm, making it a captivating region for couples embarking on their journey of love and commitment.
Where to Plan Your Central West Colorado Elopement:Breckenridge
Vail Elopement Itinerary
Day 1 – Upon arrival, check into a charming lodge or cabin surrounded by the majestic Rocky Mountains. Take a moment to soak in the serene beauty of the area and breathe in the crisp mountain air. As the sun sets, enjoy a romantic dinner at a local restaurant, and talk about the exciting adventures coming up.
Day 2 – Start your special day by blasting music and getting ready together with your partner, dancing around your cabin! Head to the breathtaking Piney River Ranch, nestled amidst the White River National Forest. This scenic paradise provides an enchanting backdrop for your intimate ceremony. Exchange heartfelt vows by the shimmering Piney Lake, surrounded by lush forests and towering peaks. The tranquility and grandeur of this secluded location will elevate the romance of your special moment. Have a professional photographer capture every beautiful moment of this intimate celebration of your love.
After the ceremony, check out some of the awesome outdoor explorations around Piney River Ranch. Choose from a variety of epic activities, such as hiking the nearby trails, paddleboarding on the lake’s pristine waters, or simply taking a leisurely stroll hand in hand. The idyllic scenery invites you to connect with nature and create memories of a lifetime.
Day 3 – On your final day, do a photoshoot at the most picturesque spots in Vail. From the iconic Vail Mountain to the charming village streets, let the stunning landscapes enhance the romance of your love story. Capture candid moments and tender embraces amidst the majestic mountains. Afterward, take a moment to relax and reflect on your elopement experience. Write love letters to each other, and read them to one another during a romantic picnic. As you get ready to leave, know that your love will forever be intertwined with the breathtaking beauty of this remarkable mountain destination.
Legal Requirements for Eloping in Colorado
Planning to elope in Colorado requires adhering to certain legal requirements to ensure that your marriage is legally recognized. Here are some important aspects to consider:
Now that we’ve covered the best places to elope in Colorado, let’s talk about the logistics.
One reason that Colorado is such a unique place for an elopement is the ability to self-solemnize. This means that you and your partner can legally get married by signing your own marriage license without a witness or officiant.
For a legal marriage in Colorado, you must go to the county clerk’s office with photo ID (you might need an appointment), fill out paperwork, and sign. There’s no waiting period so you can file it right away. Check out the exact steps and book your appointment here.
Fun fact: Since the Colorado marriage license doesn’t require witness signatures you could even have your dog sign as a witness!
Your Colorado Elopement Photographer
Amelia Marie Photography specializes in guiding adventurous couples to plan and photograph their perfect Colorado elopement day. If you’re ready to pull the plug and plan the most epic, fun, and – dare I say – badass elopement celebration, contact me today to get started on bringing your elopement vision to life!